Life is Too Short CollectionAre you looking for a fabulous life boost today? The Life is Too Short series is just what you need. Written by Connie Sokol—mother of seven, author, speaker, and amazing matching sock finder—these humorous self-development columns give you just the right amount of fun and functional. Originally written for a major newspaper and magazines, you can now enjoy the entire collection in one book. Put your feet up and laugh as you relate to time-tested tips on being a woman, wife, and mother. You'll learn the cozy stuff of how to adjust expectations, have faith in your dreams, and lighten up in motherhood. And, you'll learn a few life skills such as easy spring cleaning, simplifying the holidays, and creating successful goals. It's the perfect gift for any woman! Short, funny, insightful, these quick power columns are ideal anytime, anywhere, to rejuvenate your mind and soul.
Are We Having Fun Yet?
As much as I could complain (should I use that word?) about my sweetheart’s creative ways of parenting, I wouldn’t change them. Okay, maybe one or two things, nothing major. Sort of. But I’m learning about the benefits that his male perspective can bring.
On my way out the door for my Wednesday Night Out, I asked him to please keep the kids on a schedule, preferably the one used in our home. When I arrived home a few hours later, I was delighted to see the five-minute pick-up had been an apparent success.
“Wow,” I said, “the place looks great, honey.”
Stone-faced, but with a twinkle in his eye, he corrected, “We were cleaning up the galaxy.”
Aha, the secret. As the night continued, I saw how this space theme got things done. When I asked if they had brushed their teeth, my son flashed his pearly whites and leaned in knowingly. “I had space bugs.”
When I commented on my other son’s neat Lego bracelet, he looked disgusted, “It’s a Buzz Light-Year laser, Mom.” Amidst the italics, I stood corrected. Harnessing their hyperspace energy, my husband accomplished what would have taken me more time and probably more chop-chop, let’s-get-it-done mentality, and they had fun.
Are we having fun yet? Can we say today, last week, or last month that we have had fun with our parenting? One of the “funnest” summers I can remember so far is when my then two children, about three and one, had the Summer of Play. We literally played. Every day we went for a walk, sometimes two, pointing out trees, rocks, bugs, all the essentials. The kiddie pool was a staple, as was the after-swim smushy popsicles and warm towels. The local dollar theater showed quality kids’ movies, and sometimes we splurged on movie meals, just because. Laying on the grass or telling stories at naptime, it was by far the most enjoyable and relaxed summer I have ever had with my kids.
Parenting has definite perks. All the things we said we would do when we got older are at our fingertips, but how often do we play, chill, or stay up late? Valerie Bertinelli gave a great response to a distraught woman with picky eaters not cleaning their plates and whining for dessert. She replied, “Why does it have to be a rule to finish everything on your plate? Do you? … Kids won’t starve if they don’t finish their meals and they don’t need dessert every night. But every once in a while, freak them out and give them that scoop of ice cream before dinner!” Excellent advice for myself, I thought—“Girlfriend, you have got to lighten up.”
This is not throwing order to the wind. Establishing rules and routines are, as researchers note, essential to a child’s feeling of security. Knowing what is coming makes children feel more in control and less likely to be irritable, impatient, and all the rest of those i-words. It’s loosening the rigidness that makes the difference.
A few days ago, at summer high noon, the kids collectively said they were not hungry, until someone saw the ice cream. Suddenly, they had appetites. On a whim, I said, “Do you want dessert first?” They were about to faint. “All right,” I said, “I officially declare this Dessert First Day.” And with that, we enjoyed: we savored, we sloshed, and we slurped that ice cream as it should be.
This was fun.
Review from I Love to Read & Review Books:
For some laughter therapy read this book! I LOVED the funny stories in each chapter followed by a LIFE TIP to help you put into practice the things you just learned...and as an added bonus...there is a BOOK PICK to further your enlightenment on the subject.
Connie Sokol is a mother of seven, a national and local presenter, and a regular speaker at Education Week. She is a monthly contributor on KSL TV “Studio 5,” and regular blogger for KSL "Motherhood Matters." She is a former TV and radio host for Bonneville Communications, and columnist for Deseret News and Utah Valley Magazine. Mrs. Sokol is the author of several books including the award-nominated romance Caribbean Crossroads, the 8-week Challenge program of Faithful, Fit & Fabulous, Life is Too Short for One Hair Color Series, as well as talk CDs and podcasts. Mrs. Sokol marinates in time spent with her family and eating decadent treats.